The UConn women picked right up after their blowout first round win over Idaho by dispatching of Vanderbilt 77-44 in the second round of the NCAA Women’s Tournament.
The Huskies never trailed, and pushed their 37-24 halftime lead thanks to a 17-0 run to open the second half. UConn held the Commodores without point for the first 7:16 of the half. Vanderbilt finally ended the drought on a three-pointer by Jasmine Jenkins with 12:44 left in the game.
With the win, UConn reaches the Sweet 16 for the 20th straight season, shooting 54.2-percent in the process, holding the ‘Dores to 37.8-percent shooting.
Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis led all scorers with 22 points on 9-of-14 shooting, pacing four players who finished in double-figures for UConn. Moriah Jefferson scored 11 off the bench for the Huskies.
Tiffany Clarke led Vanderbilt with 16 points.
Another night at the office for Auriemma and UConn. He’s proven to be one of the best coaches in any sport in college and, while it’s not the Vanderbilt we’re used to seeing, the 17-0 run to begin the second half was impressive.
The Lady Huskies play Maryland in the Sweet 16 on Saturday.
Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten
Illinois suffered another blow in what has already turned out to be a brutal season.
Mike Thorne is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing his meniscus. He reportedly underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury.
Thorne, a transfer from Charlotte, was starting at center for the Illini and doing a good job of it as well. He was averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 boards, although Illinois has started off the season 3-4.
The reason for that slow start has mainly been those injuries. Tracy Abrams is already out for the season after tearing his achilles, and the Illini training room looked like a M.A.S.H. unit. Kendrick Nunn just returned two games ago from surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament. LeRon Black is still getting back to speed after offseason knee surgery. Jaylon Tate is back after dislocating a finger. Jalen Coleman-Lands was slowed by a stress fracture.
John Groce entered this season on the hot seat, and dealing with all of these injuries certainly isn’t helping his cause.
We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.
For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.
Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.
As always, you can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes right here. It’s the quickest way to get access on your cell phone or tablet.